GREENVILLE, S.C.-Michelin Americas Truck Tires, a business unit of Michelin North America, has introduced its ``next generation'' of long-haul truck tires with treadwear, rolling resistance and casing improvements the company said enable it to offer the industry's first seven-year warranty. The XZA2 steer-axle/all-position and XDA2 drive-axle tires incorporate the company's ``Next Generation Advanced Technology,'' a design methodology the Greenville-based tire maker claims can produce tires with added fuel efficiency without compromising treadwear, wet traction, casing life or handling characteristics.
The improvements produce tires with lower rolling resistance that run cooler and with reduced casing stresses, the company said.
The XZA2 and XDA2 casings are warranted for 700,000 miles of service or three retreadings, whichever comes first, within seven years of the manufacturing date.
Michelin said its seven-year warranty is the first of its kind in the industry, but manufacturers' truck tire warranties vary widely.
By way of comparison, Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. offers a six-year treadlife warranty with an initial 12-month free replacement period on three of its newest truck tires. Goodyear warrants the casings of its premium truck tires for 48 months with one retreading.
Michelin's XZA2 and XDA2 are made with:
Special compounding designed to lower operating temperatures;
A smooth-textured inner liner for easier inspection and repair;
Cable constructions that resist rust and corrosion;
An optimized belt package for ``stability, long mileage and retreadability;''
Four see-through tread grooves for water evacuation;
Shoulder grooves to resist irregular wear; and
A rectangular bead bundle to improve stability and extend tire life.
Michelin said the truck tires are up to 9 percent more fuel efficient than ``conventional'' radials and provide 10- to 20-percent longer treadlife than previous Michelin tires, increased wet traction and enhanced driver comfort.
Beginning in September, the XZA2 will be available in sizes 275/80R22.5 (load range G and H) and 275/80R24.5 (load range G). The XDA2 will be in those sizes in load range G only.
In May, the XZA2 lineup will be expanded to include sizes 11R22.5 (load range G and H) and 11R24.5 (load range G). Again, the XDA2 will be available in the same sizes in load range G.
In September, the company will begin introducing the tires to dealers and end users through tire and trucking industry trade publications including: Commercial Carrier Journal, DES, Fleet Equipment, Fleet Owner, Heavy Duty Trucking, Transport Topics, Overdrive and Owner Operator.
Michelin said it will also promote the new tires through teaser mailings to dealers, brochures, banners and counter cards.